What do you think on regulated breathing exercises as form of therapy? Have you found it helpful? — 4 Comments

  1. Thanks for the question. I tried doing ‘regulated breathing’ as I have read online about multiple benefits of it for speech. I was never successful. How will you regulate your breathing, especially as an adult, when the breathing pattern has become completely involuntary? In Yoga too, breathing is considered such an important aspect of overall health and to calm one’s mind, but that is it, nothing is said about speech fluency or anything related. I wish I could train my mind to do ‘mindful breathing’ but while speaking I completely forget that.

  2. Hello Shilpa,

    I appreciate your feedback!

    I love the way you put it into perspective which gives me a deeper understanding.
    I’m grateful for this conference and the valuable information one can gain.

    Thank you!

  3. Thank you for bringing up this interesting topic!

    For me personally, I found a relaxing diaphragmatic breathing technique to be the most helpful technique I’ve ever encountered for stuttering. And I have gone through many different types of therapy for stuttering over a period of decades.

    The technique that I found tremendously helpful was the Full Breath technique taught by the Precision Fluency Shaping Program, developed by the Hollins Communications Research Institute of Roanoke, Virginia.
    This technique requires comfortably full inhalations as the diaphragm slowly and smoothly expands, while keeping the throat area, vocal folds, vocal tract, and articulators totally relaxed. Then while maintaining all this relaxation, once a comfortably full inhalation is reached, exhalation begins without any hesitation, by simply relaxing the diaphragm. Once the diaphragm is comfortably relaxed, there is a new inhalation. The technique is best achieved through mouth breathing, which gives a better control in relaxing the entire vocal tract.
    Speech is added to this technique by beginning to speak at the moment that inhalation shifts to exhalation, with speaking only during the exhalation (as the diaphragm relaxes).

    There were periods when I practiced this technique when alone for 20 minutes or more daily. (Precision Fluency combines Full Breath with other fluency targets – gentle onsets, syllabic loudness contour, and stretched and stabilized vocalized sounds.)

    When I practiced very diligently and daily, this technique brought me near-perfect fluency that I was able to sustain for long periods of time. There were times when I maintained fluency for weeks on end, and sometimes for months – as long as I practiced intensively every day.

    There was no question that this breathing technique worked wonders with me. But eventually I decided that the enormous efforts required for me to maintain fluency were just too much.
    Off and on, I experienced periods of great fluency during a 15-year stretch (typically I attended a fluency refresher, stayed fluent for weeks or months afterwards, experienced a relapse when not practicing as intensively as before, re-attended a refresher, stayed fluent again for weeks on end, experienced another relapse, attended another refresher, and so on).
    I just got tired of this – maintaining fluency in the real long term was just too much for me.

    About 20 years ago I decided to simply accept myself calmly and peacefully as a person who happens to stutter. Life became much more pleasant for me, once I no longer was under the stress to speak fluently. It was a decision to accept myself as I am, and not feel the pressure to transform into a fluent speaker.
    Yes, the breathing technique worked very well for me, but in the end I decided it just wasn’t worth the trouble.

    • Hello Paul,

      Thank you so much for your response. Not only was it informative, but it was well-written to where I was able to understand the exercise! I never heard of the technique before, but I want to thank you for introducing it to me.
      I am happy that you found the technique helpful for a period of your life and I can see how it was just too much!
      I am even more happy to hear that accepting that you stutter was life changing for you and that you don’t feel the pressure to become a fluent speaker. I think that is the most important thing and really life changing.

      I appreciate your time and the new information you have given me.
      Take care!

      -Ellie Arteaga